Commonly referred to as the Switzerland or Netherlands of South America, Uruguay is amongst the loveliest and least known nations on the continent. It has earned this comparison not for its terrain, it is quite flat comparatively, nor for its chilly weather, although it is more temperate than many other SouthAmerican nations. Instead, Uruguay is often likened to its european counterparts because of its economic and political stability over the years.
As you could guess, Uruguay stands in stark contrast to the vast majority of South America, although it does share many cultural, culinary, and linguistic similarities to its much bigger neighbor, Argentina.
With just 68,000 square miles, you’ll be able explore the entirety of the country in just a few short day, but will want to soak up the sun and enjoy the stress-free atmosphere for weeks on end. Uruguay boasts a lot of coast line and a number of beautiful beaches, but its interior is dominated vast grassland inhabited my massive herds of the world famous Uruguayan cattle. On the western side sits the Rio Uruguay which offers fantastic sunset views and is a birder’s paradise with its diverse array of avian species.
Perhaps above all else, Uruguayan’s are most proud of their football tradition, even more so than their beef. For a country of less than five million citizens, they have an extremely talented national team that is competitive against the planet’s finest football teams. In fact, they have two world cup title to their name as they won the 1930 and 1950 tournaments. They also have an exciting domestic league so feel free to catch a match at Montevideo’s Estadio Centenario.
If you are traveling by plane, you will almost certainly arrive in the Montevideo. The capital city is quite charming and is also situated, like many of Brazilian’s large cities, on a beach. Montevideo does have a few good museums and you should make an effort to explore the historic architecture that lines the Avenida 18 de Julio.